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Importance of Friendship

Having good friends to go though life with makes things more fun. When you have someone who will be there regardless of whatever is truly something to cherish.

Listen to our take on friendship and how its shaped us over the years.

What does friendship mean to you? Do you have an a good friend or group of friends that you are really close to?

Let us know in the comments!

Love always ,

Allyson and Joelle @stillsofhue

Featured

The Guide To Effective Goal Setting

Goal setting can sometimes be a bit daunting if you don’t consider yourself a “goal-oriented” person. For most people, it’s one of those things that you do the first week 1 of the year and forget about it by week 3. I will be the first to admit that I sometimes fall into this category with certain goals that I set for myself. The reality is most of us don’t stick to their goals for a few main reasons: We lack patience because we want to see instant results and lose the motivation to keep going. We lose motivation because we’ve lost focus on the reason why we started on this journey in the first place. They lack efficient step by step planning and creating an environment for small wins. This least to a lack the motivation to remain consistent and keep going.

These steps listed below have helped to stop me from deviating from my goal. I noticed that when I set goals using these 5 steps, I am not motivated to see my goal through to the end. Motivation and willpower are huge factors to accomplishing your goals so it’s important to stay motivated even when sometimes for body or mind might be telling you something different.

Here are the 5 Practical Steps to achieving your goal

 It helps when you write it down.

Writing it down gives you a point of reference as you progress and helps you develop a solid vision of your goal. Studies show that your goal is about 1.3 times more likely to be accomplished if you write it down. 

Click here to receive your free goal setting template. 

Did you download your template? 

Yes? 

Ok good. Now let’s get started

Step 1-Think about your goal

Simply put what do you want to accomplish? This does not have to be as big as buying a house or taking a trip halfway across the world. Goals or accomplishments can be as simple or as complex as you want it to be. When setting your goal make sure it is S.M.A.R.T. 

Specific- the more specific the better

Measurable- there is a way you can measure your success

Attainable- We like to think big and we encourage other people to do so but dont get carried away. Your goal needs to be challenging but also within your capabilities

Realistic- this is where you understand yourself. See step 2

Time-based- giving yourself a time frame allows you to see if you are on track or falling behind

Step 2 – Understand your why

Be as specific as you can. Take a deep dive to solidify yourself to know why you want to do what you want to do.  This is a huge part of what will keep you motivated over the days, weeks, and months to come. Planning with this big picture in mind can give you the little boost you need to get over the speed bumps as they come. Trust me they will come. 

 Are you setting this goal to create a better life for yourself or your family? What does this “better life” look like? Are you doing this to be healthy so you can feel and look great? And so on

Step 3 – Set mini achievements and celebrate them

We all like when we win and accomplish things so setting mini targets will let you know what steps you need to take to get to the bigger goal or achievement that you have., Celebrating the smaller wins will encourage you to keep going. It will also be an opportunity to look back to see how far you’ve come. Take time to enjoy the process and the positives because when the road bumps come, and they will come, it is important to know that you are making progress. Some progress is better than no progress. 

Step 4 – Work on your mindset

There is a Chinese Proverb that says “ Be careful of your thoughts, for your thoughts become your words. Be careful of your words, for your words become your actions. Be careful of your actions, for your actions become your habits. Be careful of your habits, for your habits become your character. Be careful of your character, for your character becomes your destiny.”  This is the main point of this step. What you think becomes your word and your words become your actions. Think positively. Your will power is a huge factor in accomplishing your goals so it’s important to understand

Step 5 – Take action

It’s all great when you think about and writes down your goals but if you don’t take action you will get stuck in the planning process and not be moving forward to seeing the results that you want to see. Don’t be afraid to take the first step. When you do take it, just put one foot in front of the other. Depending on your goal you can take that literally or not. 

Here are some of my absolute favorite books that kept me motivated and helped me to five deep and think about my why and setting goals to create my best life. 

  • Crushing it by Gary Vaynerchuck
  • Goal Setting: 13 Secrets of World Class Achievers by Vic Johnson
  • Tiny Leap, Big Changes by Gregg Clunis
  • Shoe Dog by Phil Knight
  • Start with Why by Simon Sinek
  • Find your Why byt Simon Sinek

Let this year be your best year ever! Stay motivated

Love always

-Joelle @stillsofhue

What helps you to stay on top of your goals?

We would love to hear from you. Leave us a comment below!

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Simple DIY Face Mask

Make Your Own DIY Face Mask Using Common Kitchen Items

Already in ancient Egypt people knew how beneficial face masks are. Cleopatra was known for her flawless, velvety-soft skin and wanted to stay young forever. To do this, she allegedly bathed in fresh donkey milk and had real gold face masks applied to her overnight.

Even today, many women invest in expensive face masks, some of which contain many chemical ingredients. But why spend a lot of money on face masks when the refrigerator has the best ingredients for a wide variety of DIY face masks? Against large pores, blemished skin, or small wrinkles: With these simple recipes you can conjure up effective face masks for different skin needs! 

Anti-Aging Face Mask 

Tan & Blackheads Removing Face Pack For Clear Skin | Oats, Carrot Juice,  Honey - YouTube

Image Source: https://i.ytimg.com/vi/5HJqYYprRPs/maxresdefault.jpg 

This face mask is not only a great vitamin bomb for the skin, it also provides it with a lot of moisture and protects against premature skin aging

Ingredients:

2 carrots 

1 tbsp honey 

1 tbsp olive oil 

2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice 

Preparation:

Peel both carrots and cook them in a saucepan with water until tender. Then puree with a hand blender and stir to a creamy pulp. Stir in a tablespoon each of honey and olive oil and add the freshly squeezed lemon juice.  

The anti-aging facial mask to the clean face, apply, and let soak 15 minutes. Then rinse off with lukewarm water. 

Face Mask Against Dry Skin 

How to Make Your Own Honey and Avocado DIY Face Mask for Dry Skin

Image Source: https://www.thenaturalbeauty.blog/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/Honey-and-Avocado-DIY-Face-Mask.jpg 

Avocado is rich in unsaturated fatty acids and vitamins A, B, and E, which not only strengthen the skin but also provide it with plenty of moisture. The avocado face mask makes the skin soft and supple and gives the face a kick of freshness! 

Ingredients:

½ ripe avocado 

1 egg white 

1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice 

Preparation:

Crush half the avocado with a fork and add a teaspoon of freshly squeezed lemon juice. Then mix in the egg white and stir well.   

Put the face mask on the cleansed face and wash off after 20 minutes with lukewarm water.  

Face Mask Against Oily Skin 

3 DIY Cucumber Face Masks to Get Glowing Skin | India.com

Image Source: https://static.india.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/shutterstock_207458818.jpg?impolicy=Medium_Resize&w=1200&h=800 

The well-known cucumber mask is highly recommended for oily skin, as the cucumber not only provides a lot of moisture but also tightens it at the same time.  

Ingredients:

1 cucumber 

3 tbsp chilled yogurt or cottage cheese 

Preparation:

Peel and puree the cucumber. Then stir in three tablespoons of chilled yogurt or quark.  

Apply the face mask to the face and leave it on for 20 minutes. Then wash off gently but thoroughly with lukewarm water.  

Face Mask Against Large Pores

If the sebum production is too high, the pores enlarge. The citric acid narrows the pores – this makes the skin appear finer immediately after the face mask. Wheat also contains zinc, vitamin E, and B group vitamins, which remove excess sebum.  

Ingredients:

½ glass of lukewarm water 

3 tbsp wheat flour 

2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice 

Preparation: 

Mix half a glass of lukewarm water with three tablespoons of wheat flour and two tablespoons of freshly squeezed lemon juice and mix well. Apply the paste to the cleansed face and leave it on for 20 minutes. Rinse off the face mask with lukewarm water. 

Black Face Mask Against Blackheads 

All Natural Charcoal DIY Face Mask to Remove Blackheads - Metiza

Image Source: https://metiza.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/blackkhead-face-mask.jpg

Black face masks are currently the absolute hit on the net. However, the activated carbon used is not a new invention. The ancient Egyptians, Romans, and Greeks used the black powder as a home remedy to disinfect wounds.  

The activated carbon binds other substances very strongly, which is why it is often used in skincare to bind excess sebum. Activated charcoal tablets are available from pharmacies or drugstores.  

Ingredients:

3 activated charcoal tablets 

2 tbsp honey 

½ cup of chamomile tea 

Preparation: 

To begin with, crush the three activated charcoal tablets with a mortar. Then mix the honey and tea with the crushed activated carbon until a spreadable paste is formed.  

Gently apply the face mask to the cleansed face with a brush or your fingers. After 10 minutes, wash off the black face mask thoroughly with lukewarm water.  

Final Words

So, keep your skin healthy by applying these DIY face masks everyday and get ready to see the fruitful results.

Love always

Joelle @stillsofhue

A Conversation about Featurism and Colourism

Welcome to Black history month!

“You can love what you see in the mirror, but you can’t self-esteem your way out of the way the world treats you.”
― Gabrielle Union

As women of colour it does not matter how much you’ve achieved, your success is still judged based on your features and the colour of your skin.

Join us in the conversation about these tough

“Dark skin is not
a crime.
Light skin is not
a prize.”
― Anan$i

We are all beautiful and wonderfully made.

What are you thoughts about Featurism and Colorism?

IPL-Braun Experience

I have a love-hate relationship with hair removal.  I, unfortunately, did not inherit my mother’s genes when it comes to body hair, she has never had to shave her legs a day in her life and the envy is real! I on the other hand will look like a gorilla if I skip a day of shaving. It often feels like stubble will begin to come through just from the walk between my bathroom and bedroom door. So, I decided that this year I would take the plunge into laser hair removal.

So, I had made up my mind, 2021 was going to be the year I went hairless! No more razor burn, no more ingrown hairs, no more knicks. Then COVID-19 happened, and I was forced to look at at-home procedures that aimed to yield the same (or similar) results as a clinical session. This is when I learned about IPL (intense pulse light), an at-home treatment where light is dispersed in attempts to target the melanin in the hair and reduce hair growth over consistent use. 

Now, here is where my ‘melanin trigger mind’ (yes, that’s what I’ll call it!) kicked in. How would I know whether this device would only target my hair? what if both my hair and skin are targeted? would I be burned? These questions often run through the minds of POC, where we wonder if a product will be safe for us as well? thus birthed my extensive google search, and here is what I came up with based on my skin tone and hair colour.

Braun Silk Expert IPL Pro 5

**Sidebar** Isn’t this the cutest little thing? Gold and white colour scheme, nicely sized storage bag. Braun hit the nail on the head with this design, but I digress.

Braun Silk Expert IPL Pro 5 retails for CAD 499.99 and comes with two heads, one for larger and one for smaller areas. What I love about this is that Braun has added ‘SensoAdapt technology’ which allows the device to read the difference in skin tones and adapts the flash intensity to yield the safest results for your skin tone!  It was at that point where I felt the safest device out of all the ones I researched (and believe me there were many) was this one. Here is a chart referencing who this product is safest for based on skin one and hair colour.

Braun Silk Expert IPL Pro 5 PL5124

Now I won’t lie, I was terrified to use it when it finally came in, I put it off for three days just so I could muster the courage to try it on myself. But I put on my big girl pants and gave it a shot. The instructions outline that first, you must shave the area you intend to use the device on and do not apply lotions, oils or any topical creams onto your skin until after the procedure is over.

First use: Now, I wanted to say this was painless, but it isn’t. While using this product you may feel a slight pinching sensation. I didn’t feel any pain over my leg area but don’t be fooled, the higher up your thigh you go the more you will feel it! 

I felt like that slight pinch made me feel like the product was doing its job. So, I held my breath, pressed the button, and speed through the more painful areas as fast as I could.

My findings: This took about 15 minutes to complete my legs, arms and armpits. I had no burns, scars or harm done to my skin. I loved the way the setting can be lowered; the highest settings were a bit too painful for me but bringing it down to where I felt comfortable was a top-selling point. Overall, it has been 3 weeks since I have started the use of this product. You must use it once a week for 12 weeks, and then use it for maintenance thereafter where needed.

I loved this machine and will continue to document my use of this product with updates for you guys. It is currently week 3 for me while I’m writing this, and I have seen a significant reduction in the speed of growth of the hair on my legs. I am currently compiling a set of before and after photos and will be posting a follow-up blog to this in the weeks to come!

**sidebar again**

IPL is not suitable for all skin types, this tale of gorilla-like body hair and my journey to destroying it all!  will not be the same for everyone. Since we love our melanin, listed below are some articles about IPL on dark skin. Please be sure to do your research to make sure this path is suitable for you. If you happen to come across other options that have worked for you, please be sure to comment with them below!

Melanin Pop : Photo | Black lives matter art, Afro art, Female art

Have you tried IPL-Braun? If so, please share your experience !

Until next time, 

Stay blessed & true to yourself. 

Allyson @stillsofhue

 Links:

Current Trends in Intense Pulsed Light

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3390232/

Goldberg D. J. (2012). Current trends in intense pulsed light. The Journal of clinical and aesthetic dermatology5(6), 45–53.

Photoepilation and Skin Photorejuvenation: An Update

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5475414/

Martella, A., & Raichi, M. (2017). Photoepilation and Skin Photorejuvenation: An Update. Dermatology reports9(1), 7116. https://doi.org/10.4081/dr.2017.7116

Make sure to sign up for our email list and check back in with us often to see our updates!

Top 5 Health Benefits of Matcha

So what is Matcha? 

Matcha tea powder is finely grounded young green tea leaves. Matcha is different from traditional green tea because the plants are covered for up to 30 days before harvesting. This increases the chlorophyll production and increases the amino acid production in the plant ultimately giving it its rich flavour.  After handpicking the leaves are dried and grounded to a fine powder and are packed with loads of great nutrients and benefits.  To get the full benefits from matcha you have to drink the powdered leaves.  

Let’s be honest, for most people, it’s one of those things that you either hate or love. Some people say that it tastes bitter and just plain disgusting. But I always combine it with some type of dairy-free milk and prefer it hot and I absolutely love it. The best way for me to describe it is a smooth earthy taste. I know that may not be very helpful but you should give it try before you decide to turn it away. Don’t let the green color turn you away you might actually love it. And besides, it is also packed with some amazing nutrients and benefits. You will find my favorite Matcha Latte recipe down below. 

There is so much research done on matcha but here the top 5

  • Antioxidants and immune booster

Matcha tea is healthy and packed with natural antioxidants, which reduces cellular damage caused by free radicals. Antioxidants act like your body’s defense mechanism

  • Boost energy

Matcha has a high concentration of flavonoids and L-theanine. When matched with amino acids Match increases energy levels that do not cause a spike and then a crash like some of the other common caffeinated beverages. 

  • Detoxifies

Some studies show that drinking matcha can detoxify your body of different chemicals and heavy metals. The concentration of chlorophyll helps to clean out your digestive system, increase your red blood supply.

  • Boosts Metabolism

A compound called EGCG (epigallocatechin gallate), which is found in caffeinated green tea, is known to increase the body’s metabolism and thermogenic effects in the body. This is what stops or reduces the development of fat cells. Matcha is a more concentrated form of green tea. The potent EGCG combined with the natural antioxidants studies show that it’s a great solution to feeling energized and aiding in weight loss

  • Brain health

Research shows that matcha contains L-Theanine, which is known to help the brain improve memory, attention, and overall brain function. One research shows that L-theanine can relax the mind without causing drowsiness while at the same time cause the alpha frequency band, which measures brain activity, to last longer. 

So to summarize matcha is packed with amazing health benefits and the five listed here, high antioxidants, boosts energy, detoxification, boosts metabolism and brain health, are all just the tip of the ice burg and there is so much more to learn about matcha. 

Here is my favorite super simple Matcha Latte recipe. 

A little matcha can go a long way

Ingredients

1 ½ teaspoon matcha powder

1 tablespoon warm water

¾ cup hot milk 

1  teaspoon of honey or sugar or whatever sweetener you like

*side note I’m not a fan of sugar in tea or coffee and I am fully aware that some people cant drink things without it. So feel free to add more or less sugar if you like.. Or if you are like me you can completely leave it out.*

Step1

Sift the matcha powder into a cup. Add the water and stir until no lumps remain. 

Stir in your sweetener of choice. Add the milk and enjoy.

Let us know what you think. Do you love matcha as much as I do? What’s your favorite way to drink Matcha?

Like this blog post or leave us a comment below 

Joelle@stillsofhue

sources 

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